The Irony of Empire

It would take quite bit less than that. But I am getting tired of this ping-pong game. So good night from the far east coast.

Even with the responses this article has gotten thus far I can see many have over thought the problem. Do into others as you would have them do unto you. Check it and see even the bible says this. If you needed to get away from a cruel and hateful dictator for example, how would you feel if the place everyone said was a sanctuary ripped your children from your arms didnt tell you where or for how long? And for what? Protection from disease? God sees the thoughts and actions done in secret. Protection from crime? Again god sees. As for the financial burden are we not all stewards? It costs little to build things by hand. I say enough deliberation and strife. Welcome them in with open arms.


Just wondering if you own property. Would you be upset if a crowd of people showed up in your yard without notice?

Do you have house/apartment? Do you leave your doors open? If someone were to come into your home, uninvited, would you call the welcome wagon, or 911? Would you expect a clergy to to show up, or someone in a uniform?

All these political pundits, who daily beat their breasts about the border, live in gated communities, or on properties you can only see on Google Earth once the trees lose their leaves.

A small child, still in PJ’s, showed up at our door, once. She was dirty, nose running, and crying. She was promptly followed by our neighbour across the street. Social Services had dropped off the child for foster care because the parents were in trouble. Children don’t belong in court, facing consequences for their parent’s actions. Who was to blame for the child’s horror - social workers working for Social Services, or the laws that the parents broke?

Trump was, himself, just a kid when immigration laws were put in place. Numerous administrations have decided to kick the immigration can down the road because it;s a political time bomb. You start dealing with delicate feelings - pictures of crying children - and you have political suicide.

I’m just wondering how many more politically motivated articles wer’e going to have. This could turn into a political commentary website.

At least we’re thinking.


I must get out my yearbook. :slightly_smiling_face:

I think that it is really possible. When America is completely destroyed by Trump, people may invite the Pope to come here for some time and rule the Land from the WH.
I am sure this can happen. And everyone should be worried about it. :worried: :sunglasses:


You have no reliable insight as to the ultimate stance of the religious right anymore than the rest of us.

At different times in recent decades, Religious Right luminaries have spoken favorably of Sunday laws, even if many haven’t noticed.

For example, back in 1987, the Portland Oregonian reported the following regarding a Republican party retreat in the state of Oregon while Bob Packwood was still a senator:

"He (Packwood) charged that the New Right wants to impose its rigid ideas of theocracy and statism on the party and on this country.
“Packwood says this includes a legal ban on abortion, organized prayer in the public schools, and laws attempting to further the belief that the “sabbath is on Sunday.’”
Jeff Napes, “Packwood attacks New Right: uproar erupts at retreat,” Portland Oregonian, March 8, 1987.

Televangelist Pat Robertson, in his 1991 book The New World Order, wrote as follows regarding Sunday laws:

“Laws in America that mandated a day of rest from incessant commerce have been nullified as a violation of the separation of church and state. In modern America, shopping centers, malls, and stores of every description carry on their frantic pace seven days a week. Before our eyes we watch the increase of chronic burnout, stress breakdown, nervous disorders, and mental and spiritual exhaustion cauterizing the souls of our people.”
Pat Robertson, The New World Order (Dallas, TX: Word Publishing, 1991), p. 236.

David Barton, a prominent Religious Right devotee who has served as vice chair of the Texas Republican Party and more recently headed the political action committee Keep the Promise, which supported the 2016 presidential campaign of Texas Senator Ted Cruz, wrote the following positive statement in 1992 regarding Sunday laws in nineteenth-century America, describing these as proof of the country’s “Christian” values at the time:

“The court, in addressing the seventh-day sabbath of the Jewish religion vs. the first-day sabbath of the Christian religion, . . . emphasized the importance of a uniform national sabbath; in this, a Christian nation, Sunday was to be that day.”
David Barton, The Myth of Separation: What is the correct relationship between church and state? (Aledo: TX: Wallbuilder Press, 1992), p. 76.

In the same book Barton writes favorably of the following declaration by the 1853 U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee:

“Sunday, the Christian Sabbath, is recognized and respected by all the departments of the Government. . . . Here is a recognition by law, and by universal usage, not only of a Sabbath, but of the Christian Sabbath, in exclusion of the Jewish or Mohammedan Sabbath.”
Ibid, p. 183.

More recently, the following statement promoting Sunday laws was written by one Dale Kuehne, who at the time served as director of the New Hampshire Institute of Politics at St. Anselm College in Nashua, New Hampshire, where he also served as senior pastor of a large evangelical church in the same town.  In his 2009 book Sex and the iWorld, describing how intimate relationships are being trivialized by the immoral onslaught of our day, he offers the following as a solution whereby marital intimacy and family togetherness might be restored in America:

"There is a public policy remedy that can be made with no financial cost and that will likely boost profits for businesses and provide all of us with more time for one another: reenact the prohibitions on Sunday shopping and many publicly scheduled activities. The most important reason to do this, apart from any potential financial benefits, is relational. But it will be virtually impossible to achieve this without governmental intervention. As long as Sunday is unregulated, there is an incentive for all stores to stay open so they do not lose their market share. This single change in public policy would do more at less cost to create relational time than anything else we might consider.
“There may be those who agree on the importance of a shared day off but would prefer a day other than Sunday. The cultural and political reality, however, is that there will be less resistance to re-regulating Sunday shopping than regulating any other day of the week. If consensus could be built around another day, it would be worth considering, but in the United States, at least, it is hard to imagine any day other than Sunday being protected.”
Dale S. Kuehne, Sex and the iWorld: Rethinking Relationships beyond an Age of Individualism (Grand Rapids: Baker Publishing Group, 2009), p. 196.

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I remember reading my Bible that this is not a new problem. Moses had no problem with separating families if a Hebrew man wanted to be free from serfdom.

If you buy a Hebrew servant, he is to serve you for six years. But in the seventh year, he shall go free, without paying anything. If he comes alone, he is to go free alone; but if he has a wife when he comes, she is to go with him. If his master gives him a wife and she bears him sons or daughters, the woman and her children shall belong to her master, and only the man shall go free." Ex 21

  1. The evidence (statistics of the last several years) suggests that immigrants commit less crime than Americans born in the United States. The loud pronouncement of violent criminals coming across the border is generally a BIG lie. The MS13 Association with immigration is just more vicious propaganda to scare Americans and gin up the conservative base.
  2. The number of immigrants crossing the border has been steadily declining since 2007.
  3. For decades, immigration through the southern border was circular as most migrants came, worked, and returned home to their families, over and over again.
  4. The hardline policies of recent administrations reinforce circular migration of seasonal workers.
  5. Like other recent policies (massive tax cuts for the rich, increased tariffs and non-cooperation with EU), current immigration policies are likely to devastate our economy, rather than improve it.

The isolation and polarization in our national discourse has reached such a low point after this tragedy in Maryland. Perhaps the biggest failure of our President is how he has NOT brought us closer together in any way whatsoever. Are we better off as a people since he was elected? Has he inspired greater loyalty, service, or dedication from the citizens of this nation? More significantly has he provided an example of moral leadership for other national leaders and other countrys? This might be a case where the richest, biggest, and boldest has not been the best for what we want or need.


Once again you make the issue about things, property, “Your Stuff”. This is about human suffering, it is about common decency. Your rich-young-ruler mentality is going to leave you with the goats. God did not put up fences, nor did he divide the world into countries. There is little that is sacred about where you happen to shoot out of the womb. If you want to know who really has a right to complain about immigration, it is the American Indians. The Caucasians were the aggressors and we did despicable things to these people who “Were here first”. It really shouldn’t be about who was here first or where you popped out of your mother. It should be, first and foremost, who truly needs our help, our protection. If we truly wanted to resolve this, we would go into the Central American Countries that are ravaging their people and we would make it safe for them to stay where they are. But we, as a nation, don’t do that. We go in and destabilize countries, leaving chaos in our wake, such as Iraq and Afghanistan.

Data has proven that the boarder cities where most of these immigrants ultimately end up, the crime rates and violence has gone down, not up. But this administration wouldn’t believe those numbers because, scapegoating these illegals, buys him way too many votes and keeps his base happy. This is a very sick country right now and I doubt that it is going to get better. And the sickness starts from the top.


I left the Spectrum blog around the last election when I felt there was a politicization of the blog by a view primarily consistent with the Democratic party by most of the major article contributors. That was ok BUT my pushback to what I considered incorrect accusations and assertions was deleted. Not for profanity or truly demeaning statements but simply for pushing back against this particular author and a few others. Some of whom were calling the man I voted for a facist which is total nonsense!
Now for this article. So, I would like to see the exegetical view exposited that would teach us that Paul in Rom.13 and Peter in 1Pet. 2 did not mean for us to obey the authorities that God gives the sword to in order to have order…with few exceptions.
The news was full of the “immoral acts” of separating children and in cages. Pictures of children in cages from the previous administration being shown as well as a baby crying that was being “separated” from his mother over illegal immigration later shown to be false. Thus, Sessions uses Rom.13. So, one familiar with this countries founding should not be alarmed.
At the same time it seems to me in the 5 or so articles around this subject an “immoral” charge was being made against this administration.So, based on what authority? Often a good question in our postmodern age. So I see Jason saying an incorrect exegesis. I see others using the OT theocracy to say Israel just opened its borders to all who might want to come in. I suggest both of these have a limited understanding and incorrect exegesis unless one badly deconstructs scripture .
I have lived in a Muslim country, A Buddhist country and visited many countries which I was never allowed into without a passport/visa.
So now that we apply existing law that is commonplace in virtually every nation we are “immoral?” Separation occurs at least temporarily for “illegal entry” into the country. So we are to believe Paul in this case would say…“let them in you immoral leaders?” Absolute foolishness. Those promoting this view are in my opinion promoting anarchy as well as a deconstruction of scripture, which for some reason is ok in their “separation of church and state narrative.”
To associate this with German gas chambers or a sign of National Sunday laws is to me completely lacking in discernment or rationale.
Let me ask you SDA’s who hold this view. Who is most aligned with the RCC and the present “Pope”. Bernie Sanders and “Progressive/ Liberals” on socio-economics or Trump who dismissed the popes complaint of a border wall?
I suggest Trump is merely doing the state aspect of a consistent continual understanding of the “limited government”/nation of written laws tradition in the US.
I suggest to many religious and political “progressive/liberals” that is as much the basis of their irrational anger as anything else!
Pat T., DDS / M.Div.


Good thoughts. Notice how the other view “always” chooses to disconnect “legal” from “illegal” immigration. It took 5 yrs. for my wife to become an American citizen and a visa to enter the USA from Asia.
A little religious history…Some of America’s religious “Triumphalism” actually came from the “Liberal/Progressives” of the early 20th century. The Magazine “Christian Century” had foundational hope of a transformation in to “a heaven on earth” in the present age.
It was the “conservative fundamentals” that opposed the views expressed by that triumphalism narrative of Christian Liberals that cherished such hopes as the “League of Nations”. Thus originally “Christianity Today” was formed to counter what they perceived was the progressive /liberal “deconstruction” of scripture. Interesting how “liberal thought” likewise attempts to deconstruct the Constitution to say whatever they want it to.
In that sense, I suggest modern “religious/socio-political progressives” share that same narrative of “the here and now.” Thus they don’t somehow see their violation of the “church state narrative” as applying to them but appeal to emotion and “love” of what their perceived opinion of what Jesus would do in the “civil environment” until that narrative actually overtakes in importance the “gospel narrative” of “what must I do to be saved?”.

Sam, in response to your comments… hope you see this…they said I could not send another but could edit…
Thanks for your reply. I am not defending or questioning Trumps Christianity or Sanders/Hillary nor did I desire to. I voted for a person I thought had the best qualifications to lead a “secular USA.” I didn’t want a pastor…nor did I expect one. That is what churches are for.
The comparison is related to the religious history I pointed out between “progressive/liberal” religious/political views and “conservative ones.”
It has become fashionable among some SDA’s expecting a “Sunday law” to assume it would be a linking of “Conservative evangelicals” with state and pope. I was just positing should it occur, which I am NOT convinced, it is just as likely to come from “liberal/progressives” who share the same socio-economic views that Rome’s does.
I suggest that scenario is much more likely should religion be used simply as a utilitarian crutch for a ever growing larger “statism” based primarily on emotional values. Thus Hitler’s and Mussolini’s “statism” utilitarian use of “official non-antagonistic socio-economic views” of The RCC. A church that offered them escape to South America.
Thanks again for your thoughts.

I am told there is a rule for me as a new comer no more than 3 comments…anyway thanks for your comment.


By the way present law does reportedly allow someone “entering illegally” by “process of law” be removed within 15 miles of border and 2 wks. entry without trial. Now this is complicated by the taught word “political asylum.” But, why didn’t they enter by the check points? Because, many are coyote children carriers.


I don’t know what you’re talking about - what “stuff”… Should I say it again - there is no problem about immigration - just uncontrolled immigration, if you can understand the difference.


Patrick, in reference to your statement comparing in ‘apples and oranges’ fashion the Bernie Sanders with Trump. This is a false choice and comparison.
"Let me ask you SDA’s who hold this view. Who is most aligned with the RCC and the present “Pope”. Bernie Sanders and “Progressive/ Liberals” on socio-economics or Trump who dismissed the popes complaint of a border wall?
__ I suggest to many religious and political “progressive/liberals” that is as much the basis of their irrational anger as anything else!"_
Trump says he is a “very moral Christian”. He identifies with being a Presbyterian. I had a good conversation with the local leader of that church who took issue with that description by Trump. Really when you come down to it, Trump has only one qualification to be a Christian – though that is one he shares with the Pope, with me, and even possibly with you Patrick… We are all sinners. For a start, he lies, or as the Ten Commandments has it, he bears false witness. A respected Journal has listed almost 3,200 specific lies he has said since his election as President You might say that this is what all the politicians do, but 3,200 seems to be a new record… But there’s no doubt that most of what he says about his rivals and indeed foreigners, is a deliberate lie. His admiration for dictators and authoritarian figures is bizarre. Then there is greed, or covetousness as the Bible has it. Again, Trump’s whole story is built on greed. “Though shalt not steal,” says the Bible. Trump’s record as a property developer speaks for itself there. He has declared bankruptcy three times. “Thou shalt not have any gods but me” – so far as we can tell, The Donald has no gods but The Donald. “Neither shall thou make any graven image” – have you heard how many pictures of extra large blown-up Time magazine covers of himself he has? As for the specific commands of Jesus – the injunction to sell all you have and to give to the poor, or the command that we love our neighbor and refugees, come to mind - the least said the better. Patrick, children belong with their parents and not in cages. People, even those that are called “animals” by Trump, deserve to be treated with equal justice and fairness. Welcome back to the Spectrum blog, hang in there!

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The irony of a country worth immigrating to is that it must have enforceable laws including control of who enters. Governments make lousy babysitters while trying to do so.


Paul you are correct about the government being poor babysitters. But then the government is pretty poor of most programs. Be it over site, money, or policy. In my view, the government spends way to much money abroad to either the propping up of foreign governments or military security. We spend far to little in border issues. The seperation of children from adults is a double edge sword. Part protection and part just heart breaking. And BTW liberals, this policy has been going on for decades.

It comes down to human resources and political will to fix the problem. There is no willingness to solve the problem because it remains a big chip during the election process. Those terrible Democrates just want votes from brown people. Then there is the Republicans who want to say only us can fix the border issue. The result is nothing!!!


The Adventist Church sold its religious freedom 10 years ago as it supported legislation regarding marriage - which you spoke against. Someday the religious right will indeed push legislation of their beliefs - in the form of a Sunday law. And Adventists will be without a leg to stand on. Adventists cannot safely seek legislation of their views/beliefs and then expect their version of religious liberty later. Perhaps Roland Hegstad was one of the last Adventist religious liberty leaders to understand and teach that.


I find that highly doubtful, at least as it was described to me as a kid, a “universal” Sunday law. There’s no way this will happen around the world.